Afghanistan and somber reality

After his meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Chicago over the weekend, President Obama reiterated his support for a plan calling for Afghan troops to bear more and more of the military burden, culminating in a withdrawal of U.S. and other NATO combat troops by 2014.

At that point, he said, the Afghan war “as we understood it is over.”

“The Strategic Partnership Agreement, this NATO summit, are all part and parcel of a shared vision that we have in which Afghanistan is able to transition from decades of war to a transformational decade of peace and stability and development,” Obama said.

That’s the kind of thing that political leaders are expected to say on such occasions, but “a transformational decade of peace and stability and development” remains extremely unlikely for Afghanistan, and all involved know it. We have inflicted a long series of defeats on the Taliban opposition, but we have not defeated them. That’s in large part because the Taliban are an integral part of Afghanistan and they can no more be “defeated” than the Afghan mountains can be “defeated”. Their presence and influence is permanent.

We are not.

The best hope for U.S. interests is that Afghanistan does not revert to being a safe haven for al Qaeda after 2014. In that regard, U.S. leaders clearly hope to retain enough military firepower on Afghan soil post-2014 to launch counter-terror operations should that become necessary. But that capability will depend in large part on how the current Afghan government — backed by Western aid — eventually comes to terms with its Taliban countrymen.

For all of our military and economic strength, we cannot dictate the outcome in other lands. Over the years we keep telling ourselves that truth, insisting that we believe it and understand it, but thanks to the seductiveness of power, we repeatedly allow ourselves to be fooled into behaving otherwise.

Inevitably, we are then reminded once again that we were right the first time — we cannot dictate the outcome in other lands — and we reaffirm that this time we’ve finally learned and internalized that lesson.

Until the next time.

– Jay Bookman

297 comments Add your comment

Tundra Dude

May 21st, 2012
8:24 am

First….from the Tundra!

Mr_B

May 21st, 2012
8:26 am

I don’t know who said it but “the best possible outcome in Afghanistan is to drag the country, kicking and screaming into the 15th century.”

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:27 am

It’s always tough to extricate yourself from a tar pit.

Pres Obama learned from Pres Nixon – get it done your first term. Don’t let it keep going thru both terms, then have it end on your successor’s watch. With the same outcome.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:28 am

Mr. B

Sounds good. Six centuries’ progress ain’t bad.

Kind of a shocker to realize some peoples aren’t all that keen on adopting democracy.

G Mare 71( got the living' the red state BLUES!)

May 21st, 2012
8:29 am

Enter your comments here

Madmax

May 21st, 2012
8:29 am

Optomistic scenario or outright lie?

Brosephus™

May 21st, 2012
8:30 am

Jay

I took that statement as one saying, “You’re on your own now. Whether you sink or swim is up to you. We’re not gonna keep holding you up for long.” Maybe I took it wrong, or maybe I didn’t. I think peace, stability, and development in their case is relative to where they’re starting from. If we judge things by our standards, they will fail 100% of the time. However, to look at things from their perspective, they have a chance at bettering themselves based on the fact that they’ve been at war since the 80’s with little break in between. A decade without war would indeed be a decade of peace for them.

barking frog

May 21st, 2012
8:32 am

and yet the Brits are
scheduled to remain
beyond 2014..

stands for decibels

May 21st, 2012
8:33 am

love the headline.

(when you’ve said “11553″ you’ve said it all, really.)

Mr_B

May 21st, 2012
8:33 am

Paul: The whole problem with “spreading democracy to the world” is that much of the world doesn’t have much interest in it. Then Americans assume that just because somebody else doesn’t want democracy, that they really don’t want us to have it either.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
8:34 am

Have they ever had peace? Someone is ALWAYS trying to be the first in history to conquer them………

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

May 21st, 2012
8:37 am

stands for decibels

May 21st, 2012
8:38 am

Optomistic scenario or outright lie?

heh. Redundant or saying the same thing?

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:42 am

Bush had Iraq. Now Obama has Afghanistan. Both overstayed/are overstaying their welcome.

“At that point, he said, the Afghan war “as we understood it is over.”” – Then don’t wait 2 years to get out, moron.

willie lynch

May 21st, 2012
8:42 am

Unfortunately the only thing that changed in that country is the war lords have gotten richer. Some have been legitimized by being given titles that sound as though they are now diplomats but in reality they are still the same thugs who wielded power before the U.S. invasion. Ten years, billions of dollars, and unnecessary loses of life on all sides, not to mention the lose of American prestige throughout the world.

In the end this will prove to have been another wasted excursion by the elites of America into the affairs of another country for all the wrong reasons.

Once again mission accomplished.

Ayn Rant

May 21st, 2012
8:42 am

A lot of window dressing for a hopeless cause! NATO forces are withdrawing from Afghanistan because their military supply routes have been cut off by Pakistan, not because the Afghan government is ready to protect the Afghan people from the Taliban.

The way out of the failed attempt to turn Afghanistan into another Switzerland is to “declare victory and move on”!

Moderate Line

May 21st, 2012
8:46 am

That is an extremely optimistic scenario, and “a transformational decade of peace and stability and development”
++++
My guess is it will go back to the way it was. Hopefully, I am wrong. There is too much suffering in Afghanistan. Reminds of when we pulled out of Vietnam. Obama like Nixon is trying to make the best play with the hand dealt. According to OMB our military spending will decrease from the present 4.7% of GDP to less than 3% of GDP.

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:46 am

“In that regard, U.S. leaders clearly hope to retain enough military firepower on Afghan soil post-2014″

And they (gov’t) want to be taken seriously when talking about spending cuts. STOP POLICING THE WHOLE F’ING WORLD.

Tommy Maddox

May 21st, 2012
8:47 am

“…a transformational decade of peace and stability and development…”

Nothing like a little light fiction on a Monday morning.

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
8:48 am

We should have been out of there a long time go. Patraeus tried his best but had his hands tied because of political correctness. Without going into Pakistan to protect our supply routes and to hunt down bad guys, “success” is nearly impossible. And with their tribal mindset and corruption in the Karzai government, the future looks pretty dim.

Antonio Banderas

May 21st, 2012
8:49 am

peadawg,

switch to decaf, lil’ man.

Moderate Line

May 21st, 2012
8:49 am

Brosephus™

May 21st, 2012
8:30 am
Jay

I took that statement as one saying, “You’re on your own now. Whether you sink or swim is up to you. We’re not gonna keep holding you up for long.” Maybe I took it wrong, or maybe I didn’t. I think peace, stability, and development in their case is relative to where they’re starting from. If we judge things by our standards, they will fail 100% of the time. However, to look at things from their perspective, they have a chance at bettering themselves based on the fact that they’ve been at war since the 80’s with little break in between. A decade without war would indeed be a decade of peace for them.
++++
Well said.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
8:51 am

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:42 am

Bush had Iraq. Now Obama has Afghanistan. Both overstayed/are overstaying their welcome.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

HUH? Could you link me to the sources that show that Obama invaded Afghanistan because I seem to have missed that little bit of history………

stands for decibels

May 21st, 2012
8:52 am

had his hands tied because of political correctness.

Dang librulz roonin’ everythang.

Simple Truths

May 21st, 2012
8:52 am

You can’t fight a war with the goal of bringing peace to another country. You have to be willing to turn the enemy into a grease stain.

willie lynch

May 21st, 2012
8:53 am

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:42 am

When you invest that type of money in something you don’t just pull out without stabilizing your investments. Far from moronic, again President Obama has proven his ability to see the big picture.

Emotional decisions usually lead to bad ends, which is why President Obama ended up saddled with two disastrous military efforts started by the previous administration. If we held the same standards for American official that we hold for others, Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld, Poderetz, Cheney, Bush and the rest of the neo-con minions would stand trial for war crimes.

This wasn’t about getting anything right, just getting even.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:53 am

willie lynch

Disagree.

The ‘war lords’ were not in power when we invaded. The Taliban were. We destroyed the Taliban, altho they have since reconstituted.

I also disagree that “In the end this will prove to have been another wasted excursion by the elites of America into the affairs of another country for all the wrong reasons.”

Going to war with a country that was closely working with an extremist group who killed thousands of Americans then refused to sever ties is not a ‘wrong reason.”

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:55 am

Ayn Rant

“NATO forces are withdrawing from Afghanistan because their military supply routes have been cut off by Pakistan’

It’s a fast-changing world. Reports last week were Pakistan was quietly reopening the routes, so that cannot be the reason for the timetable.

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:56 am

“HUH? Could you link me to the sources that show that Obama invaded Afghanistan because I seem to have missed that little bit of history………”

Could YOU link me to where I said that? I’m not defending something I never said.

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
8:56 am

Bush and Bozo should have viewed the movie “Lawrence of Arabia” one more time before keeping us there for 10 years. Do we ever learn anything from our mistakes?

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:57 am

kayaker 71

“Without going into Pakistan to protect our supply routes and to hunt down bad guys, “success” is nearly impossible. ”

Are you saying that sending in conventional ground forces would yield more/different success that the couple thousand jihadis killed by drone strikes?

willie lynch

May 21st, 2012
9:00 am

Paul

May 21st, 2012
8:53 am

The Taliban only ruled a segment of Afghanistan, the clans in that country have their own leadership which the Taliban fully recognizes. These men and their clans have been made wealthy and will now have more money to offer up to the Taliban when they come calling. And they will come calling because you can’t extinguish a cultural identity that’s this old in just 10 years.

Jay

May 21st, 2012
9:02 am

Paul, those reports proved to be premature at the very least. Those routes have not been reopened.

That said, the closure of those routes is not why NATO is withdrawing. This has been the rough plan for quite a while now, independent of the supply-route issue.

Normal Free...Pro Human Rights Thug...And liking it!

May 21st, 2012
9:02 am

I don’t think I will ever understand the mindset of the politician, President or not. If I had been President Obama, as soon as I had announced the death of Osama Bin Laden, I would have also announced that out purpose in Afghanistan was over and we would begin withdrawing troops immediately. Staying to help “stabilizing” the Afghani Government was not and should not have been our purpose. Let the Afghanistan people figure out their own way. We got the man who perpetrated 911 on us, so “Mission Accomplished”. Now bring our troops home.

Thomas Heyward Jr

May 21st, 2012
9:02 am

@8:53

“Going to war with a country that was closely working with an extremist group who killed thousands of Americans then refused to sever ties is not a ‘wrong reason.”
.
I don’t remember invading Saudi Arabia………………….anyhoo……………….as long as there are miles and miles of Poppy feilds in Afghan,,,American costumed thugs will be there.
.
I do wish that the next place that the Banksters and MIC chooses to invade will be easier to spell though.
Maybe Syria.

Tundra Dude

May 21st, 2012
9:03 am

Was a meeting in Russia last year on the Afghan situation. About 90 participants, diplomats, experts, businesspeople and journalists from Russia, Afghanistan, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, Few thought we’d be leaving anytime soon.

The U.S. Won’t Leave Afghanistan

By Oleg Kiryanov Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russia 9 June 2011

(snipped)
Konstantin Syroezhkin, a senior research officer for the Kazakhstan Institute of Strategic Studies, dwelled on the problem of drug trafficking from Afghanistan. “At the present moment, drug production and sales make up about 40% of Afghanistan’s GDP. This sector employs up to 15% of the population. You can argue about it as much as you like, but it is completely obvious that the well-organized system of drug trafficking was shaped and reinforced during the presence of the Western coalition in Afghanistan. There is evidence that representatives of national elites of the U.S., the West, Russia and Central Asian countries are engaged in this illegal business,” he pointed out, emphasizing that “if it desired, NATO could cut off the drug flow from Afghanistan to Europe, but it does not.”

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:06 am

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
8:56 am

“HUH? Could you link me to the sources that show that Obama invaded Afghanistan because I seem to have missed that little bit of history………”

Could YOU link me to where I said that? I’m not defending something I never said.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

You said: “Bush had Iraq. Now Obama has Afghanistan.” That implies that somehow Obama is responsible for us being there. If that is so then when did he invade?

The TRUTH is that Bush is responsible for both and Obama is getting us out of both.

Rightwing Troll

May 21st, 2012
9:07 am

We accomplished our goal, no reason whatsoever to be there now.

Mission (really) Accomplished, let the savages have it to do what they will.

We need to look forward to our upcoming wars with Iran and North Korea… which will be starting next year if Mittens wins.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:07 am

Bush had Iraq. Now Obama has Afghanistan.

False equivalence.

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
9:07 am

The two books by Khaled Hosseini , “The Kite Runner” and “A Thousand Splendid Suns” should be required reading for anyone who sets out to change a country that has been the same way for over a thousand years. A Democratic Republic is far from reality in a country that still hacks off the clitoris of young daughters and sells their children for marriage at age 12. Their Islamic culture is so far removed from modern day political and social thought that it is a wonder that they will ever change. To sacrifice American lives in trying to accomplish this is folly at it’s best/worst. They understand only power and the balls to use it…. nothing more.

Rightwing Troll

May 21st, 2012
9:09 am

“only power and the balls to use it…. nothing more.”

Yak… agreed.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:09 am

willie

You spoke initially of war lords, not clans. When CIA and then special ops forces went in they had a difficult time building alliances with anyone who was more than a small-time clan leader. We managed to only find and gain cooperation from only a couple.

Clarifying terms: As I understand it, ‘war lord’ refers to an individual who wields considerably more power and has a much wider span of geographic influence than does a clan leader.

The Taliban – the political entitiy – ruled the country – the tribal/clan structure had been in place for centuries. Those tribal elders in no way were superior to the Taliban government, even within their own tribe. Dviation from the Taliban’s strict Islamic observance brought swift retribution.

My thought was always we should have worked thru the dispersed clan leadership to ensure the radicals did not gain central authority. The stage had been well set for that.

Mary Elizabeth

May 21st, 2012
9:10 am

“U.S. leaders clearly hope to retain enough military firepower on Afghan soil post-2014 to launch counter-terror operations should that become necessary. But that capability will depend in large part on how the current Afghan government — backed by Western aid — eventually comes to terms with its Taliban countrymen
For all of our military and economic strength, we cannot dictate the outcome in other lands.”
———————————————————————-

The key word is “dictate.” We may not be able to dictate the outcome of other countries (relative to the human rights of their citizens), but we can certainly “inspire” those human rights through our efforts in humanitarian, economic, and educational ways, rather than through our military might and will. Eleanor Roosevelt certainly inspired others throughout the world through her Universal Declaration of Human Rights and advocacy of human rights through the United Nations.

Defeating undemocratic forces, such as the Taliban and al Qaeda, does not have to be by military might. The effort, however, should continue – and that effort should continue in ways that are more lasting, and ultimately more powerful, than effecting change through the sword.

Tundra Dude

May 21st, 2012
9:10 am

I smelled a Wat early on, when a “psychic” journalist in Pakistan knew or predicted in June 2001,
the US military would be in Afghan later in the year…”before the snow flies”

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
9:11 am

“That implies that somehow Obama is responsible for us being there.” – No it doesn’t.

Obama’s responsible for overstaying our welcome long after we got OBL. We got ‘em. Now get out. We’ve got too many problems here in the states to worry about.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:13 am

Jay

Thanks for the update.

As I recall, we’d been thru ‘they’re closed. Now they’re open. They’re closed. Now they’re open” events during our stay. The Pakistanis had a lot of competing interests to satisfy and the Americans were always the ones to direct the attention to.

Finn McCool (The System Isn't Broken; It's Fixed ~ from an Occupy sign)

May 21st, 2012
9:14 am

Until the next time…….how true.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:14 am

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
8:56 am

Bush and Bozo should have viewed the movie “Lawrence of Arabia” one more time before keeping us there for 10 years. Do we ever learn anything from our mistakes?
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Wow, really? And what would that movie have taught anyone about Afghanistan? Lawrence never came anywhere near Afghanistan. They could have “learned” as much watching Valley of the Dolls.”

curious

May 21st, 2012
9:14 am

Don’t invade Syria; too far away and no attractions.

Invade Cuba; nearby and great tourist potential.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:16 am

Thomas Heyward

““Going to war with a country that was closely working with an extremist group who killed thousands of Americans then refused to sever ties is not a ‘wrong reason.”
.
I don’t remember invading Saudi Arabia………………….a”

Do you think that’s may because no evidence ever existed that the Saudi government gave safe haven and support to as Qaeda in the execution of the 9-11 mission?

The Saudi government was one of the governments Osama bin Laden wanted to overthrow, remember?

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:18 am

kayaker 71

“Kite Runner” is out on DVD. Available for rent. I agree – it’s worth watching.

barking frog

May 21st, 2012
9:19 am

Declare victory, end the war,
and leave 40,000 troops
there. Worked in Iraq.

The Thin Guy

May 21st, 2012
9:20 am

The best course of action would be to follow the advice of Senator George Aiken about Vietnam: Declare Victory and Leave. Whatever is left to be accomplished isn’t worth the cost in money and lives. Both Dubya and ØDumbø have erred. Admit it and get on to something more worthwhile. If I wanted my tax money spent on overthrowing a government it would be Cuba.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:21 am

“That implies that somehow Obama is responsible for us being there.” – No it doesn’t.

Yes it does. You were implying that one is like the other and now you’re moving the goalposts.

Please refrain from mentioning your affiliation with UGA in the future. You’re an embarrassment to the education that they provide there.

skipper

May 21st, 2012
9:22 am

hard to agree w/you on much Jay, but we need to get the hell out of there……………

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
9:23 am

Fred, 9:14,

Only pointing out the fact that the two are similar. Each county is, or was, run, essentially by a group of tribal power brokers where loyalty to a central government is a pipe dream. And the plan, for both, was to have some sort of representative government, elected nationally by the people of the country. This would have required the tribal leaders to give up their autonomy which they were not about to do and still are not, at least in Afghanistan.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:24 am

Morning Normal

No cartoon?

Pres Obama was stuck with what he got. One of the great perplexities of the Bush Administration is how the top leadership (Bush/Cheny) so radically changed from their earlier pronouncements (no nation building, no land wars, etc) and went to what we say, Only thing that makes sense is what I’ve read in earlier threads – the neocon faction (Wolfowitz, Perle) completely co-opted them.

Anyhow, the mission had changed and Obama was stuck with what he had. Rather like the economy. No matter what the grand plans were, he was saddled with events as they had become and personal desires have to take second seat to national interests.

Another Bush legacy that hamstrung Obama -

Mick

May 21st, 2012
9:24 am

Yes, by all means exit afghanistan…end all wars, pull back a bit and look inward to solving our own problems. That starts with getting the republican party back into permanent minority status so we can move forward…um sorry about that communistic euphemism…

stevie ray....Clowns to the Left of me Jokers to the Right...here I am...

May 21st, 2012
9:26 am

Can anyone tell me a war we fought since WWII that was worth any lives? Being evangelical about democracy is like going door to door selling religion…not effective…Why on earth does President Trillions want to remain in Afghanistan half-arsed? If he makes a second term, the Taliban could once again take control (if not already behind the scenes)and make The Spineless One look really ignorant..

Curtis Rivers

May 21st, 2012
9:27 am

Afghanistan has been the bain of those who extended themselves into it since Alexander the Great. Kipling’s line sort of tells the story from a soldier’s view in the 1800’s.
When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.
And, today, Afghanistan remains largely tribal and a terrible place to wage warfare. Hope our troops can come home soon.

Doggone/GA

May 21st, 2012
9:29 am

“Obama’s responsible for overstaying our welcome long after we got OBL”

By the time he got OBL it was FAR too late to just walk away. We were at the point where “you break it, you own it” We broke Afghanistan on a misguided nation building adventure and we could NOT, at that point, just turn our backs on it.

Moderate Line

May 21st, 2012
9:29 am

Mary Elizabeth

May 21st, 2012
9:10 am

The key word is “dictate.” We may not be able to dictate the outcome of other countries (relative to the human rights of their citizens), but we can certainly “inspire” those human rights through our efforts in humanitarian, economic, and educational ways, rather than through our military might and will. Eleanor Roosevelt certainly inspired others throughout the world through her Universal Declaration of Human Rights and advocacy of human rights through the United Nations.

Defeating undemocratic forces, such as the Taliban and al Qaeda, does not have to be by military might. The effort, however, should continue – and that effort should continue in ways that are more lasting, and ultimately more powerful, than effecting change through the sword.
+++++
Here are the countries which served on the commission: : Australia, Belgium, Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, Chile, China, Egypt, France, India, Iran, Lebanon, Panama, Philippines, United Kingdom, United States, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, Uruguay and Yugoslavia.

Looking at the list I have to say I doubt this type of example sitting is any more effective than military action. And although as a general rule I do not support military action it was military action which ended the NAZIS and the fascist. It was military action which ended slavery and put and put an end to the KKK in Tennessee and Arkansas.

Also, note even a country like France ignored these rights when it came to Algier.

Rights do not matter without a means and willingness to enforce them by people who are no the ones being negatively affected by the loss of such rights.

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
9:30 am

“Yes it does.” – No, that’s how you’re determined to take it. Even after clarifying what I meant..err…”moving the goalpost”. Whatever you want to call it.

“Please refrain from mentioning your affiliation with UGA in the future. You’re an embarrassment to the education that they provide there.”

We’ll classy there, sport. Gotta resort to petty insults when you’ve got nothing else.

stevie ray....Clowns to the Left of me Jokers to the Right...here I am...

May 21st, 2012
9:30 am

MICK,

Agree with getting out of all wars but your premise regarding GOP is incorrect. Fun fact to know and share: In the twentieth century, every war has been led by a democrat in the white house with the exception of the Persian Gulf Conflict. WWI, Wilson, WWII, Roosevelt, Korea, Truman, Vietnam, Johnson.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:30 am

Kayaker: I guess kind of in a round about sort of way lol. Syria doesn’t have as strong a culture that way as does Afghanistan.

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:31 am

stevie ray

“Can anyone tell me a war we fought since WWII that was worth any lives?”

Afghanistan. The first three months. :-)

Desert Storm. Before you respond, think of the consequences if Iraq had moved from Kuwait and moved south and west and overtaken the Saudi oil fields.

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
9:33 am

“Declare victory, end the war,
and leave 40,000 troops
there. Worked in Iraq.”

LOL

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:33 am

NO SOMBER REALITIES!!! TODAY’S MY BIRFDAY, SO EVERYONE GO OUT AND HAVE A GREAT DAY!!!

(if anyone asks, you have my permission to take the day off)

JohnnyReb

May 21st, 2012
9:34 am

W knew not to escalate the Afghan war. History shows that course is for fools.

Once there, Obama’s escalation has been a failure not in small part to him not following the advice of the military and announcing beforehand when we would withdraw.

It’s also my understanding Obama signed away any chance of launching military strikes into other countries from Afghan soil.

In short, another prime example of Obama’s failed foreign policy. Seems if he can’t talk and smile them to submission, he has nothing.

willie lynch

May 21st, 2012
9:34 am

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:09 am

I’m sorry if you misunderstood, but the warlords belong to clans, they are the effective leaders of their clan, so there is no separation between the two in most cases. Most of the clan leaders over the years of war have come to understand that arms and money do more persuading than talks.

My point is that the people who have been legitimized by the U.S. were recognized as war lords after the Russian conflict and were known to in fact be the war lords of the country who wielded a great deal of power. Do you think Karzai came out of nowhere? Do you think he didn’t co-exist with the Taliban?

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:34 am

Gotta resort to petty insults when you’ve got nothing else.

No insults there, Seabiscuit.

Gotta call ‘em as I see ‘em.

stevie ray....Clowns to the Left of me Jokers to the Right...here I am...

May 21st, 2012
9:34 am

Getting OBL over 10 years after 911 is not anything other than expensive ceremony. He was no more relevant in 2011 than the porn stash he was found to possess….too bad that using a rebuild intelligence network and the recommendation of staff to kill this guy is all President No Leadership has to spout off about….Clearly the economy is not an option given real unemployment over 16%…

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:35 am

Kam – congrats to you and your boys in blue … you missed a heckuva party!!

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:35 am

Paul: Desert Storm. Before you respond, think of the consequences if Iraq had moved from Kuwait and moved south and west and overtaken the Saudi oil fields.

I’m reading The Fist of God ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fist_of_God ) which offers up a unique explination of how the American’s and British basically forced Saddam into war rather than letting him withdraw with his Army intact.

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:36 am

“Getting OBL over 10 years after 911 is not anything other than expensive ceremony”

:lol:

riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight

your all-hat-no-cattle W couldn’t get him, ergo, he’s not important.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:36 am

By the time he got OBL it was FAR too late to just walk away. We were at the point where “you break it, you own it” We broke Afghanistan on a misguided nation building adventure and we could NOT, at that point, just turn our backs on it.

This is the awful reality that no one wants to face.

Peadawg

May 21st, 2012
9:37 am

“Gotta call ‘em as I see ‘em.

Mmm, k.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:37 am

USinUK; NO SOMBER REALITIES!!! TODAY’S MY BIRFDAY, SO EVERYONE GO OUT AND HAVE A GREAT DAY!!!

My daughter is playing a strings concert just for you today at noon. You can stream it online lol.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

May 21st, 2012
9:37 am

Well, I don’t see how we can display our Patriotic Support Our Troops stickers and take a slap at the peaceniks if our troops is setting around in a stateside barracks or maybe getting drunk at a base club. Ever think of that? No, you libruls are all about your politics of Appeasement. I mean, we got them over there. Why not let them keep fighting? This is what you get when you elect a bunch of give-away-the-store libruls. I’m so disgusted.

Have a good Monday everybody.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:38 am

USinUK

I was there in spirit.

I did read about the parades and the celebrations. Please tell me there was no untoward behavior by rowdy fans.

Fred ™

May 21st, 2012
9:39 am

“In short, another prime example of Obama’s failed foreign policy. Seems if he can’t talk and smile them to submission, he has nothing.”

Wow. Not a shred of truth in there anywhere. Well at least you are obove the rest of your compatriots in that you can at least use the President’s name……..

Recon 0311 2533

May 21st, 2012
9:39 am

During Obama’s 08 campaign and for awhile after he took office we heard him say often that Afghanistan was the war we needed to win and that Iraq was not. Today there is sharp contrast between conditions in Iraq and Afghanistan. After several months of avoidance early on in this first term Obama approved the surge and also foolishly announced a withdrawal timetable for U.S. forces. For over a year while we’ve had our military engaged fighting and dieing, Obama, the CiC scarcely mentioned anything about the war in Afghanistan. Obama’s first term in office has been all about a continuing campaign and little about effectively governing. He does not deserve a second term.

retired early

May 21st, 2012
9:40 am

This reminds me of something my retired decorated WWII veteran step dad used to say regarding Japan and China. “Japan could invade and conquer China as it has done previously…but it can never hold or control it”.
Those are two entirely different things.

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:40 am

“My daughter is playing a strings concert just for you today at noon”

oooo … is she taking requests??? I love me some Aaron Copland!

JohnnyReb

May 21st, 2012
9:41 am

Fred – please list one, just one foreign policy victory of Obama? And, killing OBL is not a foreign policy victory.

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
9:41 am

Bush didn’t “get” Saddam anymore than Bozo “got” OBL They were “gotten” by the US Intelligence network and Seal Team six. It is surprising that Bozo didn’t have his picture inserted into the documentary about Seal Team Six, like he did when he doctored the Presidential Profiles on the WH website. It is so comforting to know that this arrogant narcissist will lose his job in November.

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:41 am

“Please tell me there was no untoward behavior by rowdy fans.”

not that I know of, but Thierry was a total dick presenting the trophy

wet wiccan

May 21st, 2012
9:42 am

Our military will withdraw, but how many private contractors/mercernaries will stay?

Tundra Dude

May 21st, 2012
9:42 am

We broke Afghanistan on a misguided nation building adventure and we could NOT, at that point, just turn our backs on it.

but we can turn our backs in 2014…?
I guess the new nation’s almost “built”……

Imo, this was never about nation building. Maybe just a coincidence, but the first military bases were established on existing and proposed pipeline routes.

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:43 am

“Bush didn’t “get” Saddam anymore than Bozo “got” OBL They were “gotten” by the US Intelligence network and Seal Team six.”

:lol:

and yet Ronald Reagan is credited for single-handedly bringing down the USSR …

laugh flippin’ riot

godless heathen

May 21st, 2012
9:43 am

Yes, by all means exit afghanistan…end all wars, pull back a bit and look inward to solving our own problems.

Stare at our navels and sing kumbaya. All the world’s problem will stay away from us.

Recon 0311 2533

May 21st, 2012
9:45 am

kayaker 71

May 21st, 2012
9:45 am

Birthday Girl, 9:43,

Ronnie had a lot more to do with the wall coming down than either Bush or Bozo had about taking out dictators. And BTW, Happy Birthday.

stevie ray....Clowns to the Left of me Jokers to the Right...here I am...

May 21st, 2012
9:46 am

USNUK,

Nice to hear from you. Is getting OBL a key to our success in 2011? Who cares about W? I don’t but do note that the intelligence network was a skeleton after Clinton and it took 8-10 years to rebuild…BO certainly benefited from same…he should give W some credit same as credit on the GM bailout…but President “I Should Not RE-elected if the economy doesn’t improve” lays all the blame…

PAUL,

IMO, the only wars necessary to fight are those when our shores are threatened. I agree with you on both of those items but in retrospect, both probably could of been handle with a fraction of lost lifes…

Montrell

May 21st, 2012
9:46 am

Since we were never able to articulate the mission in Afghanistan we cannot declare “mission accomplished”. Time to just cut our losses and hightail it out like in VietNam, maybe shove some helicopters off carrier decks into the ocean for the deja vu effect.

USinUK - pro-gay-marriage thug and former Girl Scout

May 21st, 2012
9:47 am

“A North Carolina high school teacher was captured on video shouting at a student who questioned President Obama and suggesting he could be arrested for criticizing a sitting president.

The Salisbury Post, which first reported on the YouTube video, did not identify the teacher in question, who is reportedly on staff at North Rowan High School. The video does not show faces, but the heated argument in the classroom can clearly be heard.

“Do you realize that people were arrested for saying things bad about Bush?” the teacher said toward the end of the argument, telling the student, “you are not supposed to slander the president.”

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/05/21/nc-teacher-captured-on-video-suggesting-student-could-be-arrested-for-obama/#ixzz1vVnRSPil

sounds like a FOX viewer right there …

0311/8541/5811/1811/1801

May 21st, 2012
9:47 am

“Inevitably, we are then reminded once again that we were right the first time — we cannot dictate the outcome in other lands — and we reaffirm that this time we’ve finally learned and internalized that lesson.”

Germany? Japan? South Korea?

Only if we do it right.

That said, the only thing that remains now is how many name will be on our “Afghanistan Wall”.

“War is Sweet for the Inexperienced”

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

May 21st, 2012
9:48 am

…but Thierry was a total dick presenting the trophy

Who?

Paul

May 21st, 2012
9:48 am

willie

It’s not that big an issue. I do agree with how you portray the warlord in that sense, just felt it important to note in that country tribe and clan are not synonymous, that a local tribal elder is not a clan leader and, most pertinent to this conversation, prior to the American invasion, warlords or clan leaders or tribal leaders did not run their areas contrary to the dogma of the Taliban. If they wanted to live.

Another point germane to the conversation: I agree the warlords have gotten richer and will hazard a guess that the richest among them are either part of, related to, or closely embedded with the Karzai government.

Just another reason I despise the man.

Tundra Dude

May 21st, 2012
9:50 am

Safety tips for Afghan citizens:

Avoid large outdoor wedding parties.

Seek employment in the poppy fields or the processing labs.